It was not a good week for some of the NFL’s usually reliable quarterbacks. Several passers tumbled down the quarterback power rankings, including Josh Allen, Derek Carr, Jared Goff, and Lamar Jackson. While those veterans struggled to get off the ground, the league’s elite passers continued charging toward the MVP and the playoffs.
Make sure to check out last week’s power rankings for this article’s full context.
1. Russell Wilson 27/37 261 yards, four touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 1
After throwing three interceptions and losing to Arizona last week, Wilson dismantled the San Francisco 49ers. The MVP candidate posted his sixth game with a passer rating over 100.0 this season while completing 72.97% of his passes in a comfortable win. At 6-1, the Seattle Seahawks are the No. 1 seed in the NFC.
2. Patrick Mahomes 31/42 416 yards, five touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 5
It was only a matter of time until Mahomes had a big passing day, and it came against the worst team in the NFL. The 7-1 Kansas City Chiefs cruised to a 35-9 victory despite only producing 50 rushing yards. Mahomes took over the game, completing 73.81% of his pass attempts and posting a 144.4 passer rating. The former MVP still has only thrown one interception this season.
3. Tom Brady 28/40 279 yards, two touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 4
For three weeks in a row, Brady has dominated his opponents. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers nearly went to overtime against the New York Giants on Monday night, which caught the nation by surprise. Despite Tampa Bay’s struggles, Brady still had an elite night, completing 70.0% of his passes.
4. Aaron Rodgers 27/41 291 yards, three touchdowns, one fumble lost
Last week’s ranking: 3
Despite the Green Bay Packers suffering a surprising loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Rodgers played well. The former MVP completed 65.85% of his passes and posted a 110.9 passer rating. However, the Packers only produced 22 points, and Rodgers lost a fumble while winding up for a Hail Mary in the game’s final seconds.
5. Ryan Tannehill 18/30 233 yards, two touchdowns, one interception
Last week’s ranking: 2
After opening the year with five straight wins, the Tennessee Titans have lost consecutive games to AFC North teams. Tannehill didn’t play horribly, but he was average at best. The reigning Comeback Player of the Year completed 60.0% of his pass attempts and finished the day with a 92.8 passer rating.
6. Deshaun Watson BYE WEEK
Last week’s ranking: 6
The Houston Texans are only 1-6, but Watson is doing everything he can to help the team stay alive. He’s averaging a career-high 299.3 passing yards per game, 8.8 yards per attempts, and a 108.7 passer rating while completing 69.5% of his passes. At this pace, Watson should finish 2020 with 4,788 yards, 34 passing touchdowns, and 11 interceptions.
7. Joe Burrow 26/37 249 yards, two touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 10
On Sunday, Burrow played even better than his numbers show. The first overall pick completed 70.27% of his passes and posted a 106.7 passer rating. The Cincinnati Bengals are 2-5 and almost out of the playoff race, but their rookie quarterback is on pace for 4,624 yards, 22 touchdowns, and ten interceptions.
8. Drew Brees 31/41 280 yards, two touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 8
Even without Emmanuel Sanders and Michael Thomas, Brees and Alvin Kamara managed to haul the New Orleans Saints past the Chicago Bears. The game went to overtime, but Brees led the Saints into Chicago territory for a game-winning field goal. It’s Brees’ second game in a row with two touchdowns, no interceptions, and a passer rating over 100.0.
9. Justin Herbert 29/43 278 yards, three touchdowns, two interceptions
Last week’s ranking: 9
The Los Angeles Chargers held a 24-3 lead over the Denver Broncos midway through the third quarter. However, Herbert threw an interception as the Chargers were setting up for a score, and Drew Lock caught fire in the second half. The Chargers are a talented team, but they can’t find ways to finish games. Herbert made some rookie mistakes, but he still played at about an average level.
10. Kyler Murray BYE WEEK
Last week’s ranking: 12
Murray isn’t going to compete for the MVP this year, as some people predicted before the season, but he has the Arizona Cardinals in position to make the playoffs. The former Heisman Trophy winner is on pace for 4,222 yards, 29 passing touchdowns, 16 interceptions, 998 rushing yards, and 16 rushing touchdowns.
11. Ben Roethlisberger 21/32 182 yards, two touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 16
Big Ben didn’t look right until the second half against Baltimore. Roethlisberger barely moved the ball in the first half, and Pittsburgh’s only score was the pick-six that came within the game’s opening minute. Luckily, Roethlisberger came through in the clutch, responding to a Baltimore touchdown in the early fourth quarter. Despite his struggles, Big Ben posted a 101.3 passer rating.
12. Josh Allen 11/18 154 yards, one interception, one rushing touchdown
Last week’s ranking: 7
The Buffalo Bills should’ve lost to the New England Patriots on Sunday, but a Cam Newton fumble bailed out Allen’s team. After opening the season with four consecutive wins, the Bills haven’t looked right over the past four weeks. They’re 6-2, but this team isn’t playing elite football anymore. Allen has four passing touchdowns and four interceptions in the past four games.
13. Matthew Stafford 24/42 336 yards, three touchdowns, one interception, one fumble lost
Last week’s ranking: 19
Outside of the interception, Stafford didn’t have a bad game. He connected with Marvin Jones Jr. for two touchdowns and hit Marvin Hall for a 73-yard strike. Unfortunately, Kenny Golladay suffered an injury, missing part of the game, and Detroit only produced 29 rushing yards on 13 carries.
14. Matt Ryan 21/30 281 yards, one interception, 27 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown
Last week’s ranking: 20
The Atlanta Falcons picked up their second win of the year on Thursday night. Ryan and Julio Jones connected seven times for 137 yards, which set the night’s high-water mark. Most of the scoring came on the ground or via field goals, but Atlanta’s defense also had one of its best games this year.
15. Derek Carr 15/24 112 yards, one touchdown, 41 rushing yards
Last week’s ranking: 13
Carr recorded his second consecutive game with a passer rating under 100.0, but the Las Vegas Raiders still advanced to 4-3 with a 16-6 victory over the Cleveland Browns. The Raiders dominated Cleveland on the ground, amassing 208 rushing yards on 45 carries.
16. Teddy Bridgewater 15/23 176 yards, one touchdown, one interception, 30 rushing yards
Last week’s ranking: 14
Bridgewater is hot and cold. During the season’s odd weeks (ex. Week 1, 3, etc.), he averages roughly a 115.0 passer rating. In the even weeks, Bridgewater only averages a 79.2 passer rating. In Week 8, he struggled against Atlanta’s defense, and the Carolina Panthers dropped to 3-5.
17. Philip Rivers 23/33 262 yards, three touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: 24
In his best game of the season, Rivers produced a 123.5 passer rating. Week 8 marks the second consecutive game where Rivers has three passing touchdowns. The veteran quarterback is slowly turning his season around, but his best performances are against low-ranking defenses. The Indianapolis Colts cruised to their fifth win of the season in a 41-21 blowout against Detroit.
18. Kirk Cousins 11/14 160 yards, one touchdown
Last week’s ranking: 25
I felt compelled to put Dalvin Cook here instead of Cousins, considering Cook ran for more yards than his quarterback threw for. Behind Cook’s 226 yards from scrimmage and four total touchdowns, the Vikings advanced to 2-5. Sunday was only Cousins’ second game without an interception this season.
19. Jared Goff 35/61 355 yards, one touchdown, two interceptions, two fumbles lost
Last week’s ranking: 15
The Los Angeles Rams fell victim to Brian Flores’ savvy, underdog Miami Dolphins. Goff had a horrible outing, turning the ball over four times. Goff’s 65.9 passer rating was his worst since Week 12 of last season against the Baltimore Ravens. Goff struggled against Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and San Francisco last season. Those teams had top defenses, but Miami does not.
20. Lamar Jackson 13/28 208 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions, 65 rushing yards, two fumbles lost
Last week’s ranking: 11
Sunday might’ve marked the worst game of Jackson’s young career. He only completed 46.43% of his passes and turned the ball over four times. Jackson’s 65.8 passer rating was his worst since facing the Steelers in Week 5 last season, when he posted a 54.9 rating. Over the past four games, Jackson has seven passing touchdowns and four interceptions.
21. Nick Mullens 18/25 238 yards, two touchdowns
Last week’s ranking: Unranked
After Garoppolo limped into the locker room in the fourth quarter, Mullens took over. The former undrafted free agent had a good game, posting a 128.4 passer rating and helping the 49ers score 20 points in the final 15 minutes.
22. Gardner Minshew BYE WEEK
Last week’s ranking: 22
The 1-6 Jacksonville Jaguars are contemplating benching Minshew, but the mustached Washington St. product is the least of Jacksonville’s worries. He has a 94.4 passer rating, which compares well to other starting quarterbacks. At this rate, he’ll finish 2020 with 4,240 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions.
23. Jimmy Garoppolo 11/16 84 yards, one interception
Last week’s ranking: 21
Garoppolo limped into San Francisco’s locker room at the start of the fourth quarter. The Seahawks already had a commanding 27-7 lead, and the veteran’s absence didn’t make much of a difference. The offense played better without Garoppolo under center.
24. Baker Mayfield 12/25 122 yards
Last week’s ranking: 17
Mayfield didn’t make a ridiculous leap up the standings after his outstanding performance in Week 7 for this exact reason. The third-year quarterback performs well against weak opponents, but he struggles against playoff-caliber teams. Sunday marked Mayfield’s first game without a passing touchdown this season.
25. Carson Wentz 15/27 123 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions, two fumbles lost
Last week’s ranking: 18
Every time it looks like Wentz is rounding back into form, he has a horrible game. The Philadelphia Eagles beat the Dallas Cowboys 23-9 and maintained their spot atop the NFC East, but Wentz had his fifth two-interception game this season. The 27-year-old has 17 total touchdowns this year and 16 total turnovers.
26. Drew Lock 26/41 248 yards, three touchdowns, one interception
Last week’s ranking: 32
The Broncos only scored three points in the first half of their Week 8 matchup but finished the game with 31. Lock got hot in the second half, and he threw his first touchdown since Week 1. Week 8 also marked Lock’s first multi-passing touchdown game since Week 14 last season.
27. Nick Foles 28/41 272 yards, two touchdowns, one interception
Last week’s ranking: 28
The Bears suffered their second consecutive loss on Sunday, but they pushed the Saints to overtime. Foles faced pressure all night, taking five sacks. He completed 68.29% of his pass attempts, but it wasn’t enough. Foles’ interception midway through the third quarter led to a New Orleans field goal that made the difference in the game.
28. Kyle Allen BYE WEEK
Last week’s ranking: 26
Allen isn’t lighting up the stat sheet, but he’s 1-1 in games he played start to finish for the Washington Football Team. In three total games, he has a 99.4 passer rating, four touchdowns, and only one interception. At 2-5, Washington is still in play for the top seed in the NFC East.
29. Tua Tagovailoa 12/22 93 yards, one touchdown, one fumble lost
Last week’s ranking: 27
Tagovailoa had an interesting outing in his first game as a starter. The Alabama product only completed 54.55% of his pass attempts for an 80.3 passer rating. With under 100 total yards, Tagovailoa had a below-average performance. Burrow produced 193 passing yards in his first game while Herbert threw for 311. However, the Dolphins still advanced to 4-3.
30. Cam Newton 15/25 174 yards, 54 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, one fumble lost
Last week’s ranking: 31
Newton fumbled the game away, literally. As New England drove in for a go-ahead score in the game’s final minutes, Newton turned the ball over on a quarterback run. The Patriots have four consecutive losses, and Newton has two passing touchdowns, seven interceptions, six rushing touchdowns, and three fumbles lost this season. Eight of those ten turnovers and only two of those eight touchdowns came in the past three games.
31. Sam Darnold 18/30 133 yards
Last week’s ranking: 30
Another week, another tough day at the office for Darnold. Sunday marked the third-year quarterback’s third consecutive game without a passing touchdown. This is by far Darnold’s worst season. Some blame falls on the 23-year-old, but most belongs to New York’s front office and Adam Gase.
32. Daniel Jones 25/41 256 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions
Last week’s ranking: 29
The Giants should’ve beaten the Buccaneers on Monday Night Football. However, Jones repeatedly missed open wide receivers down field. He also threw two bad interceptions in the second half, which resulted in ten points for Tampa Bay. Jones won’t last much longer in New York if Joe Judge continues turning this team around.
33. Ben DiNucci 21/40 180 yards, two fumbles lost
Last week’s ranking: Unranked
DiNucci’s first and probably final game as an NFL starter was every bit as sloppy as analysts expected. The rookie seventh-round pick posted a 64.6 passer rating and failed to take advantage of Dallas’ arsenal of offensive weapons. With their latest defeat, the Cowboys fell to 2-6.